A scientist has designed a simple and inexpensive system that is very eco-friendly which remove the crude oil floating on the surface of the sea effectively. The crude oil accounts for polluting and destroying the marine ecosystem. Oil spills in the marine bodies are very disastrous that cannot be avoided completely till the time we continue to drill the sea for oil and transport it across miles of the distance across the ocean, experts said. A very effective measure would be the removal of oil slicks by absorbing the oils into a separable solid phase.

At present, the scientists from the Indian Institute of Science, Education and Research (IISER) in Thiruvananthapuram in the state of Kerala have found that a rigid gel is created by the congealed oil within the impregnated cellulose and extracting the particles is possible.

Annamalai Prathap and Kana M Suresan from IISER have devised and examined an intimidating simple strategy. Amalgamating the gelation and absorption processes, they very tightly held together the oil to a porous matrix and simply extracted the solid particles from the water. The granules, even with the oil, did not sink, rather remained at the surface.

The experts also demonstrated that squeezing of the granules that were congealed can assist in recovering the spilt oil. The experts chose cellulose as it is very cheap, porous and environmental friendly carrier matrix and impregnated it with the oleogelator which is an organic compound that is also very cheap. This simple step of impregnation proved to the strategy in the conversion of the cellulose into a very effective system that absorbed oil and recycled it.

“Organogelators that are based on the selection of the phases are amphiphiles that can facilitate the congelation of oils selectively from the mixture of water and oil which is biphase in nature,” the scientists stated in the journal Angewandte Chemie.